Bangka Day Memorial

15 March 2024

Honouring Legacy and Courage

On Sunday, February 18th, Mrs Helen Finlay, Principal of St Peter’s Woodlands, stood as a representative of our school and the St Peter’s Woodlands Old Scholars’ Association to pay respect at the 82nd anniversary of the Bangka Day Massacre. This solemn service commemorates the valour of our South Australian Army Nursing Sisters, who endured unimaginable horrors during the Bangka Day Massacre in 1942 when the SS Vyner Brooke was sunk off the coast of Bangka Island near Sumatra and the ultimate sacrifice was made by Australian Nurses at the hands of Japanese forces on Bangka Island.

Among those remembered is Liet. Elaine Balfour Ogilvy, a former student of Woodlands CEGGS and one of the courageous nurses who perished on Bangka Island. To ensure her legacy endures, the St Peter’s Woodlands Old Scholars’ Association established a scholarship in her name. Initially intended for academic achievement in high school, this scholarship now supports a current St Peter’s Woodlands Year 5 student as they complete their final year of primary school (Year 6). We look forward to inviting our 2025 recipient to attend the memorial with Principal Helen Finlay and our School Engagement Manager, Paul Mesecke to gain a deeper understanding of the legacy Elaine left.

This scholarship not only honours the memory of Liet. Elaine Balfour Ogilvy but also serves as a beacon of hope and encouragement for future generations, inspiring them to embody the same spirit of courage and resilience in the face of adversity.

As we reflect on the bravery of those who came before us, we also celebrate the promising future of our deserving Elaine Balfour Ogilvy Memorial Scholarship recipient, Chloe. May Chloe’s journey ahead be filled with success and fulfillment.

Learn more about Elaine’s story

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